BHOPAL: A story penned by Amarkant and rendered into a play Zindagi aur Jonk was staged at Bharat Bhavan in the city.
It was part of the third day of the four-day-long 39th Foundation Day festival of Bharat Bhavan. Directed by Bansi Kaul, the play was presented by Rang Vidhushak, Bhopal. The play was dedicated to late Padma Shri Kaul who passed away recently. This was the last play directed by Kaul.
The play is a tale of conflict between severance and strengthening of human bondage. A beggar, known to be a nuisance in the village moves to the city and settles in one of its mohallas. Accused of stealing and later found not guilty arouses sympathy for him in the neighbourhood. He is fed with leftovers and is now called ‘Rajua’.
In the changed scenario he becomes the servant of the entire colony. The grime around the houses in the colony gives him cholera and he develops an insufferable itch. Entry into the houses is banned for him. This is when a little boy brings the news to the Sutradhar that Rajua has died. The neighbourhood is saddened by his death. A letter with this news is posted to his village. A few days later Rajua reappears and tells the Sutradhar that a crow had sat on his head and the only way to change this ominous foreboding was to spread the rumour of his death.
In his director's note, Kaul had written that ‘Rang Vidushak’ has over the years developed a performance idiom that has given it a unique identity. It has preferred to perform plays written originally in Hindi. Amarkant has played a key role in India’s post-Independence Hindi literature scenario. His stories mirror the socio-economic circumstances and absurd behaviour patterns of different sections of the society. Their crumbling beliefs and non-existent principles and value systems have brought about a change in human relationships. It has been challenging to dramatically depict Amarkant’s stories. “We hope that staging this author’s genius will strengthen the bond between writing stories and enacting them,” said the note.
Besides the play, a sarod recital of Amir Khan was held which enthralled the audience. In his 30 minutes performance, he presented ‘Aalap and ‘Jhala’ in raga ‘Rageshwari’.